Taliban claim control of Panjshir Valley

Taliban claim control of Panjshir Valley

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Islam News – The Taliban claimed on Monday to have captured the Panjshir Valley, raising their flag over Bazarak, the last Afghan provincial capital not firmly under their control, even as opposition forces there said that they would fight on from the mountains.

The Taliban never managed to control Panjshir, a rugged area 70 miles north of Kabul, the last time they ruled Afghanistan, from 1996 to 2001. It was the launching point for the U.S.-led invasion after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York and the Pentagon.

Soviet forces, during their occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s, made advances into the territory on at least nine occasions, only to be repelled each time.

Taliban fighters posted images online said to be of militants raising the flag of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, as the Taliban call the country, as well as of their forces talking to local leaders.

The opposition group, the National Resistance Front, disputed the Taliban’s claim of having conquered the entire province, but conflicting accounts of what was happening on the ground were hard to verify because internet and telephone service into the region has been cut off.

Source: The New York Times